DID YOU KNOW? Bonnie Donovan
Did You Know thinks that the La Cumbre Plaza project for over two thousand residential units must be subjected to rigorous CEQA public examination before any concrete actions by the city of Santa Barbara can begin.
People of the greater San Roque area, you are about to be invaded.
There are plans to build thousands of apartments in your area. There will be 2,000 apartment units alone in La Cumbre Plaza. That means at least 4,000 additional people and 2,000 additional cars a day spilling onto already overcrowded State Street.
Remember, Chick-fil-A blocked State Street with only 10 cars. How do you feel about 2,000 cars blocking State Street every morning and evening? You do know that they will be removing one lane in each direction of State Street as part of the 2016 Bicycle Master Plan?
The city approved a “maximum” of one parking space per development, so will they tell you that the 4,000 tenants won’t be allowed parking with their units? As though that will prevent them from owning a vehicle. Common sense tells you otherwise.
The invasion of people will be accompanied by a car parking invasion along all your residential streets. We have seen this elsewhere already in Santa Barbara, so we know it will come to you if you don’t organize and fight back against this politically designed destruction of beautiful San Roque (aka upper State Street).
At the very minimum, demand an independent, environmental report and even better set up the organization and funding to produce your own. Do it now! If you wait, it will be too late for you to gain control of your own destiny.
We can add the idea that without all the details, it’s clear that Santa Barbarans will soon have no choice in the matter of how their city looks if they don’t wake up and take notice and object to what’s happening.
Look around upper State Street. You have the Marc, Grace Village, Hope Gardens and La Estancia to name a few. Now go downtown, where you thought everything was going to stay and not destroy your neighborhood: 835 E. Canon Perdido, 634 and 618 Anacapa, 700 Santa Barbara St, 510 Salsipuedes , 604 Cota St. and the 400 block of Chapala Street.
Now for the approved and not completed yet, you have 219 E. Haley, 35 Guterriez, 425 Santa Barbara St., 425 Garden St., 500 block of Garden St., Funk Zone, 701 Milpas St. and 600 block of Chapala St. Jus wait.
New hotels approved include 517 Chapala St., 302 W. Montecito St., 311 W. Montecito St., 328 Castillo St., Cabrillo Boulevard, Milpas Street, 900 State, Mission Street, 800 Garden St. and 35 Anacapa St.
And that’s just the latest 10 developments.
Other cities have pushed back. The state is not as powerful as they appear. We’re acting like sheep before the wolves. Making it easy for them.
Carmel pushes back, and even our little hamlet of Solvang pushes back. Huntington beach is fighting back, and nobody is joining them, sad because if the state and elected officials saw citizens fighting back it could budge some change.
There is also a group of fed-up neighbors that are fighting back: Our Neighborhood Voices. They have a meeting each Saturday at 6 p.m., and you can join in on Zoom. Below are a few paragraphs from their webpage. https://ourneighborhoodvoices.com.
Join us as we stand up, fight back and win!
The politicians and developers have had their say.
Now it is our turn! We will be working to give every California voter the chance to speak out about what is happening in their own neighborhoods. Our measure takes away the blank check to developers and restores a process that allows neighborhoods to be heard.
We will bring back balance, so our towns and cities don’t get stuck with massive bills. And we must tell the politicians: We need real solutions to our housing problems, not a blank check to developers and bills that silence our neighborhood voices.
The developers make billions. We pay the bill.
What is so dangerous about the giveaway to developers is not just that it will take away our neighborhood voice. It will leave every California family with a significant new bill.
The two laws passed by Sacramento do not require developers to contribute one new cent to roads, transit, schools, parks, police and fire protection, new water sources, or any other service.
That’s just one of the reasons neighbors from every corner of California are joining us and fighting back.
We can have new housing without even more traffic gridlock.
There are solutions, but the politicians gave their developer donors the ability to build market-rate, multi-story projects in every neighborhood and took away our ability to speak out about projects that are being built literally right next door to us.
It isn’t affordable housing! It’s massive profits for developers.
The politicians say they took away our neighborhood’s voice because we need to lower the cost of housing. But their two bills create NO new affordable housing.
There are zero requirements to build new affordable housing. The developers will make billions, and the facts show that these two state laws will create massive displacement — forcing working families out of their own communities.
Stop the blank check to developers!
Instead of actually working to create new housing without traffic gridlock, sprawl and environmental damage, Sacramento politicians handed a blank check to developers to build what they want, where they want, without contributing to new transit, schools or roads — and without our ability to speak out.
After accepting tens of millions of dollars in contributions from for-profit developers, this year the Sacramento politicians passed SB 9 and SB 10 — two damaging laws that essentially tell us to “sit down and shut up” about what is happening right next door to our homes while developers demolish single-family homes and build multi-story, multi-unit projects.
We will not sit down — and we are speaking out! We are standing up to overturn these damaging laws by passing a statewide initiative in 2024 that restores our neighborhood voice and sanity to our planning process. We can’t turn our local planning over to developers. The result will be gentrification, displacement, traffic gridlock, environmental damage, higher taxes and sprawl.
The politicians are taking away our ability to speak out when developers damage and gentrify our neighborhoods.
A series of recently passed laws allow developers to build multi-story, multi-unit buildings right next door to single-family homes and deny our ability to fight back. We are a coalition of thousands of California neighborhood leaders creating an initiative for the 2024 ballot that would bring back our ability to speak out about what happens in our own neighborhoods.
Help us fight back and win for our neighborhoods
Please consider a donation to Our Neighborhood Voices: ourneighborhoodvoices.com.
Bonnie Donovan writes the “Did You Know?” column in conjunction with a bipartisan group of local citizens. It appears Saturdays in the Voices section.